McLaren Body Shield: Innovation With 3D Scanning & Printing

When you think of McLaren, what is the first thing that comes to mind? Luxury sports cars? Design and innovation? Formula 1 racing? But what about personal healthcare and safety? McLaren Applied Technologies, part of McLaren Group have used 3D scanning and printing to develop a high strength body shield made with the same materials from the Formula 1 car called Project Invincible. Using high end automotive materials, McLaren Applied Technologies created an incredibly strong composite shield to serve as a reinforced ribcage and to protect vital organs of the chest. This idea began as a challege from a client of theirs who asked McLaren to develop a device to protect vital organs after a surgery. In response, McLaren developed the high-failure strain body shield. Some of the materials used from the Formula 1 car include Zylon fibers (used for protection against side penetration), and carbon fiber (flexibility & durability).

Body Shield development Process: 3D Scanning & Printing

This is not just McLaren using leftover materials to create the body shield. Strict and intensive testing went into Project Invincible. The began with a blank canvas so there was freedom for multiple departments to get involved with the project and to offer possible solutions for their client’s problem from mechanical engineers, industrial designers, specialists, and even race car drivers. While the development stage was taking place, they had the client come in for a 3D body scan to ensure exact dimensions and give the client a body shield that would not only be functional, but also comfortable. After narrowing down the design to 20 options, McLaren turned to 3D printing for rapid prototyping and testing. Impact testing was conducted at the same facility where the Formula 1 crash-testing is done. Equipped now with the 3D body scan, 3D printed prototypes, their final design started to take shape. They were left with a perfectly engineered body shield that protects against impacts and transfers the weight of those impacts to safe regions. At these safe regions, gel like material is there to further dissipate impacts to vital organs. It is clear, McLaren continues to innovate and inspire future engineering and performance using 3D scanning and printing technologies. To learn more about Project Invincible, click here. For more information regarding our 3D scanning services for your current or upcoming projects, click here. For any and all 3D scanning or printing needs, Arrival 3D has you covered.